The Wildcats started off a stellar game Friday night with intensity from the jump. Senior Sabrina Belquist scored the first 8 points of the game in the first two minutes of play, and the Cats never looked back. Belquist added 5 more in the frame, supplemented with three layups by junior Ashley Poshard and a deep shot from sophomore Morgan Burt. The Regents were firing from downtown, hitting three 3-pointers in the quarter. But the Cats had the 25 – 10 lead after the first eight minutes.
In the second, Belquist continued her night of prolific scoring with two more 3-pointers (she had five in the game), while junior Olivia Lo and sophomore Natalie Anthony added buckets from up close. The Regents hit two more 3-pointers but were unable to cut into the lead. The Cats were up 37 – 18 at the break.
In previous games, the Cats had been tripped up by third-quarter lulls, especially with the lead. There was not a hint of one tonight. The Cats further amped up their defense, holding the Regents to just 5 points in the quarter, extending the lead with continued scores from Belquist, two layups from senior Sara Chiala (her first points of the season after returning from injury last week), and 3-pointers from junior Carlee King and sophomore Jeanette Grasty. In the fourth, with the clock running for the final five minutes, the Cats held the Regents scoreless.
The Cats dribbled out the clock with a 68 – 23 lead. Belquist ended the game with a career-high 34 points. The Cats move into the winner’s bracket for the second round against San Benito tomorrow (Saturday) night, with a record of 5 – 3.